Tuesday, February 23, 2010


(Oh yeah... I'll be back when I can catch my breath again.)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

I fear for the future...

The future scares me sometimes... and currently because I am responsible for helping to shape it!

Last night, for the 3rd year in a row, I spoke at my friend Becky Carroll's New Media class at UCSD. This year's class is the largest one she's had to date- with 34 students learning about New Media/ Social Media. Whether she's told the class or not- teachers sometimes don't (wink)- she also says this is the best class she's had to date...

Once again, Becky had me in the class to speak about the experiences I've had with resurrecting Masi via Social Media. I shared my passion for SM (and Masi) with the class and then we had an excellent Q&A period. In the excitement of it all, I forgot to snap any pictures; I had planned to snap a few during my presentation and post them to Twitter while in the class... but my arms were flailing too much (and my gums were flapping).

The class was great- just as Becky told me- and the Q&A time was a blast for me. Those who know me know that I am nearly as passionate about SM as I am bicycles and Masi, so getting into a great conversation about SM was really a blast. Previous years were really a lot of fun too, so I can't really say this class is any "better" than the previous two years- but there was a lot of engagement and the discussion period probably could have gone on for another hour... well, I could have gone on for another hour on my own.

So, if you're among the students from the class- thank you again for letting me come speak to you and share my humble bike nerd experiences with you. And Becky- I am forever indebted to you for the continued experience of being a part of this great class you are so lucky to get to teach (and they are lucky to get to be in).


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I work with buttheads...

I work with a few buttheads, namely our art department. They took a break from designing stickers to make a movie spoof of me. I am admittedly a geek- there's no hiding it- so the guys often call me a "Barney", kinda like being called a "Fred" in the cycling world.

Ever since the end of my thumb was severed off in my crash two years ago and successfully reattached, I've gotten really fond of giving the "thumbs up" for nearly anything. It's kind of become a "signature move" of mine.

Anyway, I tried to get a little lunch time ride video for our website last Friday, but there wasn't a ton of useable footage to make anything with... except for this;

If nothing else, I do have a sense of humor about myself... even if it still means I work with buttheads.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

I'm not dead yet... promise

All I can say is that things are busy, I'm struggling to stay caught up and on my bike daily and obviously the blog has suffered again. Lots of travel coming up soon as well... so I'm gonna keep trying to post regularly, but it's proving to be one helluva challenge.


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Off the wagon... again...

I really want to write some blog posts, but my brain is fried from just too much of too much and too many. As so many of my ex'es have said in the past- "it's not you, it's me"... though I have a feeling they actually meant it was ME and not them.

I'll be back around soon... unless my head finally does actually explode.


Sunday, February 07, 2010

First one out of the way...

I'd sure like to lie about today's race and spin a yarn of comeback and victory, but alas... the race was quite simply much faster than I was ready for. My legs didn't feel bad, but my lungs and cardiovascular system just were not prepared to go that fast. The race was loaded with some crazy good talent with Amgen/ Giant there with a full squad of current former national and world champions on their team. Needless to say, from the very first lap, it was blisteringly fast.

I looked so happy before the start...

The first two laps were fast, but I briefly had the thought, "there's no need to panic, I can do this". And then things got fast- really fast! I immediately began to lose my place in the group and slid further back each lap as I eventually found myself at the back and struggling to hold on.

Sitting on the start line thinking of my strategy; don't get dropped...

And we're off!

After about 5-6 laps, I called it a day as I lost contact with the back of the field on our way up the short rise to the start/ finish line. I was gassed- my lungs were burning and my heart rate was somewhere in the area of over-caffeinated hummingbird.

As I was reviewing my pre-race strategy ("don't get dropped"), I got dropped.

My wife was there to cheer me on, as well as a few friends, but I had to face the reality that my legs might not be as bad as I feared, but the rest of me certainly is. Though it was a major disappointment to do so badly, I am happy to have gotten the first real crit since my crash out of the way. I managed to not get hurt and I also managed to have fun. All in all, I'm happy with that as a starting point... and now I'm motivated to keep trying even harder to reach the next level of fitness.


Saturday, February 06, 2010

I've been through the desert on a horse with no name...

I just back home last night, after nearly a week in the desert around Lake Mead, in Boulder City Nevada. Once again, I was there as part of a group with Jill Hamilton (Haro MTB/ Lifestyle Brand Manager) and James- "Monkey"- Ayres (Eastern Regional Sales Manager). Together, we were in Boulder City to speak to the bike department managers of one of our largest retail partners, Sun & Ski Sports. We also did two days of demo rides on various bikes. It should be noted that on one of the slides of my presentation, where I was thanking them for our partnership, I inadvertently spelled the name of the company as "Sun & SKIN"... amazing the difference in meaning one little letter can cause. After our time spent with "Sun & Skin", we did a few more retail shop visits with some Haro/ Masi bike shops in the Las Vegas/ Henderson area to complete the retail interaction experience!

During the time we were there, we also had a few chances to get out for some great bike rides as well...

Monday was spent driving, so there was no riding.

James almost always falls asleep as soon as the car starts moving- he's meditating on how to make Masi an even bigger success... or checking his eyelids for holes.

In all the years I've made the drive to Las Vegas, I've never seen this much snow in the desert- this was at about 4,000' elevation. Pretty surreal to see snow this low... with cactus all over the place.

Tuesday morning, James and I got out for a ride down to the Hoover Dam and up the other side to the Arizona viewpoint.

Overlooking the Hoover Dam/ Colorado River- always an amazing view that just never gets old to me.

In all the years I've been riding in this area, it's the first time I've actually seen big horn sheep. These two females were nibbling away just below the Arizona overlook. Two males were up on the ridge above. They seemed totally unimpressed by the modern, mechanical world that rolled around them. Pretty cool.

James looked a little happier to be finishing the ride after all the climbing we had to do coming back from the dam. Not sure of the amount of climbing we did on that ride, but it's a pretty fair amount!

Tuesday afternoon the S & S guys came out for the 1st day of demo rides and that evening we did our brand presentations... where I made my simple typo that I will never get to live down... I'm pretty sure.

The guys getting their demo rides ready- the Speciale CX was a popular bike of choice, as were the 3VC 105 bikes.

Jill, during her presentation- she did an awesome job and was a very tough act to follow.

Wednesday, I got to ride with a few of the S & S guys on a nice 20 mile out and back loop. The wind stayed mellow, so it wasn't a total death march... even though the last few miles were all up hill.

Thursday was our big dealer visit day, but that morning we got out for a nice ride in the Boulder City area on their fantastic 31 mile bike path. Jill won the studdette of the day award for riding the last half of the ride without a functioning front shifter. She muscled her way up some pretty good hills in her big ring before allowing me to finally release the shift cable so she could ride in the small ring the rest of the ride.

Jill and James after an incredible section of bike path that had some amazing, rolling, twisty climbs. Such fun!

After our ride, we headed out to three excellent bike shops in the Henderson/ Las Vegas area;

JT's Bicycles has a few great Masi bikes and the guys there were all very nice. Tell'em the Masiguy sent you in when you go in to buy your first/ next Masi!

Bike World
is an "old school" bike shop- in all the good ways. It may not be the most glamorous looking, high polished shop, but after 40 years in business they've built a loyal following by providing good service to their customers. The poster above was on my wall for many years- Francesco Moser was a great hero of mine when I was a starry-eyed teenager dreaming of racing in Europe.

Our last shop of the day was Bike Shop in Henderson. Though they have no Masi in stock at the moment, they have had some in the past and may be bringing them in again- so go talk to Terry and the guys about getting more of them in the store! I fell in love with the Land Shark in the above photo. Land Shark was one of those brands I always lusted after and respected when I was racing in the late 80's/ early 90's. The paintjobs were always among the nicest around, at the time. Land Shark remains one of the most beautiful bike brands I know of- equally as impressive as those by Dario Pegoretti.

Friday morning I got out for one last ride to the dam before we hopped in the truck for the long 6+hr drive back to San Diego. It was a cool, grey morning, but the ride was still great... except for the gnarly headwind I had coming back up the nearly 10 miles of climbs back to the hotel!

The gorgeous twisties that lead into Arizona after you cross the dam.

The view from the top, from the Arizona side.

After a shower and a cup of bad, hotel coffee...

These very impressive bronze statues are a part of a memorial to all the men who died during the construction of the Hoover Dam- we should never forget that great civil projects often come with an unspoken price; there are 96 officially listed deaths from the construction of the dam, though many believe that number to be significantly greater.

All in all, it was a great week spent with some great people... and I got to do some pretty good riding as well!


Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Good morning from the Hoover Dam!

I won't lie, it was a spectacular morning for a ride. James and I
rolled down to the dam and then up into Arizona- even saw some bighorn

Monday, February 01, 2010


Heading out the door for the week...